Bridgwater seconds welcomed their North Petherton counterparts to College Way in the second Albion Pethy derby of the season.
Bridgwater were looking to exact revenge for their first teams’ narrow defeat a few weeks ago, and were up for a tough game with Pethy 2nds riding high at the top of the league. And what a thriller the spectators were in for.
Pethy kicked off into a strong wind, Bridgy immediately gathered and sent the ball back for John Hill to clear their lines, making good use of the wind to gain extra distance. The first half was played out with neither team gaining the upper hand but with plenty of rugby being played.
Petherton made several surges into Bridgwater territory but a comination of good scramble defence and some poor handling meant that the whitewash was not crossed.
Bridgwater also had their own periods of pressure but were themselves also unable to threaten the Pethy line. The halftime score was a fair nil all.
Bridgwater started the second half strongest and quickly put three points on the board via a John Hill penalty. But the lead did not last long as Petherton played the conditions well, with good kicking pinning Bridgy in their own 22. A penalty was conceded and duly converted to level the scores at 3 apiece.
The game continued like this for the next quarter hour, with Bridgy unable to get out of their own half, Pethy scored a further 2 penalties to take the lead at 9-3.
Bridgwater finished the game the stronger of the two sides, and after a lineout drive the ball via Hill and Hill to replacement fullback Hill who touched down 15m from the touchline. The kick would have retaken the lead, however in the conditions it was never an easy kick and no one was surprised when it was missed.
With only two minutes left on the clock, strong defence from Petherton forced the ball into touch to end the game with the score at 9 – 8 to North Petherton.
This was a great game to watch with two evenly matched teams. Bridgwater were on top in the set plays with their scrum clearly dominant over a larger pack, but Pethy probably had the better of the loose play, isolating several Bridgwater attackers enabling turnover ball on several occasions.
Bridgwater are away to Castle Cary next weekend.
Team: Brakes, Kerry, Smith, D. Steward, Willis, J. Hill, T. Hill, Saunders, Sturdy, Ball, Page-Symonds, Burtenshaw, Sluman, Stradling (Capt), O. Steward
Reps: J. Hill (used), Lipscomb, Moulding (not used)
Try: J. Hill